2. Planning of locations for trade and industry
Contents - Previous - Next
2. Environmental impacts and protective measures
2.1 Impact of industrial and commercial business
2.2 Environmental impacts of associated infrastructural measures
2.3 Social implications
3. Notes on the analysis and evaluation of environmental impacts
4. Interaction with other sectors5.
Summary assessment of environmental relevance
Decisions on locations for industrial and commercial projects or industrial/commercial zones are taken as part of regional and local planning. Since decisions on locations are environmentally relevant the minimisation of environmental loads must constitute a permanent element of such planning.
Location decisions must take account of:
- requirements relating to location (topography, traffic connections, soil characteristics, supply and disposal facilities etc.)
- sensitivity of the location and its surroundings to certain influences (existing air or water pollution, flora and fauna worth conserving etc.).
The nature and extent of environmental pollution depend on how far the forecasts and regulations made in the planning process coincide with actual environmental impact in subsequent settlement and can be implemented.
While certain environmental impacts such as land use, sealing of land etc. can be forecast quite accurately in the location planning process, other environmental impacts such as accident risks are factors of uncertainty. This uncertainty is partly due to the fact that the actual nature and size of the businesses to be established later is not known at the planning stage.
Unless sufficient allowance is made in the planning process for these factors of uncertainty, a decision on settlement can have serious environmental consequences.
2. Environmental impacts and protective measures
Any large-scale work, particularly the development of industrial and commercial establishments, will have a substantial impact on the environment.
This includes effects on the population, fauna, flora, soil, water, air, climate, landscape, property (including buildings of architectural merit and archaeological remains) and the interactive and synergetic effects of these factors.
Area planning in itself has no direct environmental impact. However, this planning creates a reliable basis for specific settlements which in turn have environmental effects. The nature and extent of the effects depend on the significance of the location within the ecological context and on the nature and size of the businesses to be established there. Therefore the environmental protection function of area planning does not end with selection of the location.
When a location has been established either statements should be made on the type of industry to be established there or a guarantee must be given that the specific environmental impacts will be re-examined and scrutinised if settlement takes place later (environmental monitoring).
If for legal or other reasons it is not feasible or possible to lay down specific parameters for subsequent settlement, the location decision made during the planning must assume the worst case (development of installations with high emissions and high risk potential).
The environmental impacts of industrial developments can be divided into three areas:
- environmental impacts due to construction and operation of industrial and commercial establishments
- environmental impacts due to accompanying infrastructural measures and
- environmental impacts due to socio-economic secondary effects.
These impacts can be countered by means of the following location planning activities:
I. Choice of "macro" location
Here it should be remembered that an industrialisation strategy concentrating on a small number of regions or on one region will exacerbate migration from the land and intensify urbanisation trends with attendant environmental problems (cf. environmental briefs Provision of Housing, Spatial Planning) and may lead to regional concentration of environmental loading and over-use of resources.
II. Choice of "micro" location
The choice of location should be the one from which the fewest adverse environmental impacts are anticipated, taking into account current land-use, adjacent uses and any inherited problems, together with natural features (geological subsoil, water resources, climate, wind conditions, soil, flora and fauna).
III. Conditions and requirements
For type and scale of businesses, particularly in relation to emissions, risk potential, waste, wastewater, use of resources (water, power), establishment of compensatory measures and environmental monitoring measures/technologies.
The most effective environmental protection measures are those aimed directly at preventing or reducing emissions, land-use and resource consumption.
This can be achieved through
- technical measures, for example by imposing special requirements on the businesses to be located there in respect of minimisation of emissions or air pollutants and noise, wastewater pollutant concentrations, power and water consumption, prevention of soil and groundwater contamination, determination of minimum number of floors in buildings, etc.;
- restriction of types of industrial and commercial operations to sectors producing little pollution or operations suitable for the location;
- geographical allocation of establishments within the industrial area and structural measures to protect residential areas, particularly against noise emissions;
- construction of wastewater treatment plants for purification of industrial and commercial effluents;
- selection of businesses according to criteria such as:
recycling potential, utilisation of process heat e.g. between establishments;
- introduction of precautionary measures relating to installations and devices protecting against outside influences.
If a strategy of prevention and reduction of environmental disturbances as close as possible to their source is not possible for economic, political, planning or legal reasons, the location of the industrial or commercial area must be established so that the interaction with natural local features and surrounding local land-uses gives rise to the lowest possible environmental loading.
2.1 Environmental impact of industrial and commercial businesses
When selecting a location, the following land types are to be preferred:
- land that is unsuited
or poorly suited to agriculture
- of little value in terms of protection of species
- lacking in groundwater reserves or having reserves with dense overlying strata and ground with high filtration and buffering capacity
- in climatic positions favouring the dispersion of air pollutants
- at a sufficient distance from sensitive land-uses such as housing and agriculture.
Using this method of site location acute environmental loading can be avoided by diluting pollutants and exploiting the natural regenerative and buffering capacity of the environmental media.
Even so, creeping environmental destruction (high chimney policy, acid rain) may result, and this must be countered at an early stage through constant and extensive environmental observation and monitoring. Possible secondary consequences include the break-up of places of habitation and work, leading to greater environmental problems through increased traffic and the destruction of urban structures.
The natural framework will be impaired by the very choice of a site for the location of industrial or commercial installations, before the activities themselves (e.g. production) have even begun. Therefore the use and intensity of use of an industrial or commercial development and its effects on the environment should be forecast at an early stage and for the long term.
For this purpose, the following information should be gathered (following Simmleit (29)):
Information on the most viable alternative solutions and details of essential selection criteria with regard to environmental impact
· Location criteria
- meteorological and microclimatic situation and air purity
- water quality and hydrological situation
- hydro(geological) and pedological situation
- earthquake risk
- conservation areas and rare biotopes
- islanding effects for flora and fauna
- intersection of land areas and neighbouring land use
- displacement of agricultural production
- utilisation of natural resources
- protection of cultural heritage (buildings, archaeological digs etc.)
- infrastructure (roads, buildings, power and water supply)
- wastewater infrastructure
- waste disposal infrastructure
- transport links
- traffic volume
It is also necessary to indicate:
- alternative production processes
- alternative raw materials
- alternative construction methods
- alternative wastewater and waste air treatment plants
- alternative waste treatment or recycling facilities
- alternative energy supply
- alternative storage facilities for dangerous goods
Detailed description of project
- description of physical characteristics
- project location
- nature of industrial or commercial operation
- size of industrial or commercial operation
- land area required during construction and operation
- description of principal features of production processes
- type and quantity of materials to be used
- storage and transportation of raw materials, semifinished products and finished products
- type and quality of expected residues and emissions during construction and operation of installation
- susceptibility to malfunction and risk potential
- water requirement
- wastewater volume
- waste volume
- possible contamination of soil, groundwater and surface water
- pollutant emissions into the atmosphere (gaseous, particle)
- energy consumption
- light emission
- heat emission
- other radiant emission
Description of the environment that may be significantly disturbed by the proposed settlement
- population (resettlement)
- properties (including buildings of architectural merit and archaeological remains)
- landscape (recreational areas)
- interactive and synergetic effects between factors listed above
Chronological description of possible substantial environmental impacts of the proposed industrial or commercial development as a consequence of
- existence of the industrial or commercial installations
- use of natural resources and
- emission of pollutants, the generation of environmental nuisance and the treatment of waste.
This description should cover direct and also any indirect, secondary, cumulative, short-, medium- and long-term, permanent and sporadic, positive and negative effects of the development project.
A precise assessment of certain sector-specific effects can be carried out on the basis of the environmental briefs relating to the field of trade and industry.
2.2 Environmental impacts of associated infrastructural measures
A substantial prerequisite for the operation of an industrial or commercial location is an infrastructure (supply and disposal system) geared to the requirements in question. Planning of locations for industry and commerce must therefore include a plan for the necessary infrastructural installations, which for their part have environmental impacts, some of them major.
In particular the following infrastructural fields are affected by location planning:
An essential requirement for an industrial/commercial location is an efficient transport network (road, rail, water, air) for transportation of employees, goods, means of production and waste materials.
This creates problems for people and the ecosystem through noise, vibration, air pollution, water pollution, sealing of land, intersection of open spaces etc. The population affected experience considerable traffic nuisance, particularly from heavy goods vehicles.
See also environmental briefs Transport and Traffic Planning, Road Construction and Maintenance, Road Traffic, Railways and Railway Operation, Airports, Shipping on Inland Waterways.
· Energy supply
There can be a substantial energy requirement for certain industrial sectors such as steel production, particularly where electric furnaces or smelting plants for non-ferrous metals (aluminium smelters) are used, and for the generation of heat and steam in large furnaces using solid, liquid or gaseous fuels. This may necessitate the new construction or expansion of power stations of all types, transformer stations, power lines etc. The resulting secondary environmental effects (e.g. air pollution) may in some cases be considerable.
See also environmental briefs: Energy Overall Planning, Power Transmission and Power Distribution.
· Water supply
The industrial supply of coolant water, service water and potable water can inflict serious problems on the local population through consumption of scarce resources, particularly in arid areas.
The use of water supply pumps may cause a noise nuisance.
Apart from power stations, the most significant industrial water consumers are the steel, paper, cement and chemical industries, to varying degrees depending on the production methods used.
See also environmental briefs: Water Framework Planning, Urban Water Supply, Rural Water Supply, Wastewater Treatment.
Sewage and wastewater treatment is closely connected with the field of water supply. Health risks and disturbances to the ecosystem caused by industrial wastewater (e.g. heavy metal content) must be prevented by means of an environmentally sound overall concept.
See also environmental briefs: Wastewater and Rainwater, Solid Waste Disposal.
The problem of industrial waste and the treatment thereof assumes central importance because of the major potential environmental impact in terms of hygiene, soil, water and air, particularly in the case of highly dangerous toxic wastes (special waste).
See also environmental briefs: Waste Management and Disposal of Hazardous Waste.
Reference is made to the briefs on mining and energy as well as trade and industry in addition to the environmental briefs on infrastructure already quoted for a detailed assessment of environmental impacts by infrastructural installations.
2.3 Social implications
Resettlement of and new settlements for people are consequential effects of an industrial location being planned.
Workforce migration can cause severe problems in terms of housing, mains services, traffic, refuse and sewage volumes, fuel and water consumption etc.; established social structures may also disintegrate.
There is also a danger that the policy of minimising adverse effects on the environment through distance will gradually become less and less effective as separate industrial/commercial and residential areas steadily grow towards one another.
3. Notes on the analysis and evaluation of environmental impacts
As already mentioned, all industrial and commercial activities affect the environment adversely to some degree. At best, therefore, the aim of observing environmental impacts can only be that of allowing selection of those locations and uses which impose the lowest environmental loads.
The methodological procedure for data-gathering, forecasting and evaluation of location planning from the point of view of environmental impacts should be based on the following scheme:
Inventory and assessment of the initial situation at the various alternative locations (location alternatives) in terms of
- current land-uses and functions for people (e.g. climatic function, recreational function)
- scope, quality and exploitability of natural resources
- function of protecting species and biotopes.
Status quo forecast (how the site will develop without the arrival of industry or commerce.
Quantification of impact (industrial or commercial area with associated infrastructure) and possible measures to alleviate and compensate for disturbance (technical alternatives in terms of resulting adverse impact factors), e.g. by means of
- wastewater treatment plants
- spent air cleaning plants
- reuse of waste (recycling etc.)
- recultivation measures
- use of non-polluting raw materials
- use of low-emission production methods.
Description of socio-economic secondary effects and problems they cause.
Description of the sensitivity of the natural environment, of resources and of uses in terms of the expected load factors (e.g. initial loading of air and water).
Forecast of effects of an industrial development, including measures to reduce and compensate for impairments in the various locations.
Evaluation of the situation after completion of the industrial or commercial development.
Environmental considerations can be catered for more easily if a comprehensive legal framework exists governing planning and construction processes on the basis of which approval procedures for a specific industrial project can be undertaken.
Ordinances for individual businesses may for example lay down emission limits for protecting the natural systems on which life depends when industrial and commercial developments are planned and constructed. However, unlike immission limits, these emission limits only govern adverse environmental impacts indirectly.
It should be noted that limits do not yet exist for all environmental problems relating to industrial or commercial developments (e.g. impacts on the natural environment). In these cases operating guidelines should be developed and recommended to protect human health and the natural environment.
To accommodate environmental concerns when planning locations for trade and industry, international guidelines of the EC, WHO or other organisations (see section 6, references no. 12, 32-37) provide important reference values, but these should only be applied taking into account local circumstances (inherited environmental problems, future development trends etc.) of the country or region.
4. Interaction with other sectors
Planning of locations for trade and industry must take account of interactions with other sectors because close `dovetailing' may produce negative synergetic effects, resulting not only in the exceeding of emission limits and excessive consumption of natural resources but also in a reduction of their regenerative capacity.
Planning of locations for trade and industry makes allowance for possible environmental effects not only of the installations but also of the associated infrastructure. Certain important links with other sectors have already been mentioned.
5. Summary assessment of environmental relevance
Planning of locations for trade and industry is a tool for implementing economic and structural policy. The resulting measures always involve impacts on the natural environment and the landscape which can hardly ever be reversed if important environmental and social effects are not considered in the planning phase.
Therefore a precise forecast of the consequential effects on people and the environment is required, including an examination of the possible alternatives (cf. 2.1).
In principle, forecast and assessment of environmental impacts due to selection of a particular location for industrial or commercial projects can have three outcomes:
- a recommendation that the location is suitable for industrial or commercial purposes, because no serious environmental effects are anticipated, or the planning data submitted is enough to show that there is no possibility of reducing the effects or of finding an alternative location.
- a recommendation that the location should not be put to industrial or commercial use on the grounds of adverse environmental impact.
- a recommendation that the location should only be used for the development subject to implementation of certain improvements or compensatory measures.
This may refer to the location as a whole, or to certain areas used for specific types of production.
Asian Development Bank (AsDB): Economic Analysis of the Environmental Impacts of Development Projects, 1986.
Asian Development Bank (AsDB): Environmental Guidelines for Selected Infrastructure Projects, 1986.
Bechmann, A.; Rijn, M.; Winter, G.: Gesetz zur Durchführung der Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung (UVP-Gesetz). Draft with notes. Dreisam-Verlag, Freiburg 1987.
Braun, R.: Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung in der Bauleitplanung. Kohlhammer Verlag, Stuttgart, 1987.
Bundes-Immissionsschutzgesetz mit seinen Ausführungsverordnungen.
Bunge, Th.: Die Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung im Verwaltungsverfahren, Carl Heymanns Verlag, Cologne 1986.
Burhenne, W. E. (Ed.): Internationales Umweltrecht Multilaterale Verträge. Beiträge zur Umweltgestaltung Band B 7. Looseleaf edition in 5 slipcases. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin.
Burhenne, W. E. (Ed.): Umweltrecht in den Europäischen Gemeinschaften. Beiträge zur Umweltgestaltung Vol. A 48. Looseleaf edition in 4 slipcases. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin.
Coenen, R.; Jörissen, J.: Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung in der Europäischen Gemeinschaft. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1989.
Cupei, J.: Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung. Carl Heymanns Verlag, Cologne 1986.
Dorsch Consult: Umweltrelevante Grundlagen für Planungsentscheidungen in der Standortvorsorgepolitik der deutschen Industrie im Auftrag des UBA, Munich 1976.
EC Directive 85/337 of 27.06.1985 on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment.
Fleischer, G.: Standort-Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung. In: Thome-Kozmiensky, K. J. (Ed.): Handbuch zur Planung von Abfallbehandlungsanlagen. EF-Verlag für Energie-und Umwelttechnik GmbH, Berlin 1989.
Fürst, D.; Nijkamp, P.; Zimmermann, K.: Umwelt-Raum-Politik. Ansätze zu einer Integration von Umweltschutz, Raumplanung und regionaler Entwicklungspolitik. edition sigma, Berlin 1986.
Global 2000: Report to the Presidents, Washington 1980.
GTZ: Umweltwirkungen von Infrastrukturprojekten in Entwicklungsländern, Consultant-Tag 1985, Eschborn 1986.
Hübler, K.-H.; Otto-Zimmermann, K. (Ed.): Bewertung der Umweltverträglichkeit. Eberhard Blottner Verlag, Taunusstein 1989.
Hübler, K.-H.; Otto-Zimmermann, K., (Ed.): UVP-Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung: Gesetzgebung, Sachstand, Positionen, Lösungsansätze. Eberhard Blottner Verlag, Taunusstein 1989.
Hundertmark, U.: Die Durchführung der Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung. Eine verwaltungs- und verfassungsrechtliche Analyse der Zuständigkeiten und Bindungswirkungen. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1988.
Inter-American Development Bank (IADB): Environmental Checklist for Industry Projects, without year of publication.
Jarass, H. D.: Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung bei Industrievorhaben. Carl Heymann Verlag, Cologne 1987.
Jörissen J.; Coenen R.; Franz, P.: Die Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung in den USA. Beiträge zur Umweltgestaltung Band A 103. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1987.
Loretan, Th.: Die Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung. Schulthess Polygraphischer Verlag, Zurich 1986.
Lühr, H.- P.: Anlagensicherheit und Umweltverträglichkeit. IWS-Schriftenreihe Band 9. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1989.
Paschen, H.: Die Rolle der Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung im Entscheidungsprozeß. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1989.
Randelzhofer, A.; Harnd, R.: Grenzüberschreitende Zusammenarbeit bei der Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung, Umweltbundesamt-Bericht, German Federal Environmental Agency Reports 2/89. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1985.
Schemel, H.J.: Die Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung (UVP) von Großprojekten. Beiträge zur Umweltgestaltung Bd. A97. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1985.
Schulz, R. S.: Becker, B. (Ed.): Deutsche Umweltschutzgesetze. Looseleaf edition in 4 slipcases. Verlag R. S. Schulz, Percha am Starnberger See.
Simmleit, N.: Nutzen Sie Verträglichkeitsprüfungen als neues Instrument der betrieblichen Umweltvorsorge. In: Sietz, M.; Michahelles, R. (Ed.): Umwelt-Checklisten für Manager. Eberhard Blottner Verlag, Taunusstein 1989.
Spindler, E.: Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung in der Raumplanung. Institut für Raumplanung, Dortmund 1983.
Storm, P.-C.; Bunge, T. (Ed.): Handbuch zur Umweltverträglichkeitsprüfung. Looseleaf edition in slipcase. Erich Schmidt Verlag, Berlin 1988.
Thome-Kozmiensky, K. J. (Ed.): Waste Management in Developing Countries 1. EF-Verlag für Energie- und Umwelttechnik, Berlin 1986.
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP): Guidelines to Environmental Impact Assessment in Developing Countries, 1985.
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP): Industry and Environment Guidelines Series: Guidelines for Assessing Industrial Environmental Impact, 1980.
United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO): Manual for Preparation of Industrial Feasibility Studies, 1978.
World Bank: Environmental Considerations for the Industrial Development Sector, 1978.
World Health Organization (WHO): Environmental Health Criteria, Geneva, without year of publication
Contents - Previous - Next